Many in the media seem to have forgotten that there are entities other than BP with legal responsibilities for the disaster. An internal audit conducted by BP PLC on the Deepwater Horizon oil rig detailed severe safety flaws months before the Gulf of Mexico oil spill. The audit details how the drilling rig, owned by contractor Transocean, failed to fully comply with BP’s standards. Seven months before the April explosion, auditors found 390 maintenance tasks that were more than a month overdue on the rig. These included maintenance work on parts of the blowout preventer, the safety device atop the well that failed to trigger on the day of the accident.
BP and Transocean, each of whom should face heavy penalties, have disagreed on which company should take responsibility for the spill and have been pointing fingers at each other on a regular basis. For example, it was reported by the Associated Press on August 19th that Transocean was accusing BP of “withholding critical evidence” relating to the cause of the oil spill. It will be interesting and probably most revealing to see what BP has been hiding. The truth is both companies were at fault and contributed to cause the disaster in the Gulf. They must be made to pay for what they did.
Sources: Associated Press and The Sunday Times
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